NORTH POLE, Ak- In the first game of the double head in the boys contest and Daniel Hornbuckle takes it in the lane for a nice euro-step lay-in to give West Valley an early 4-0 lead. Hornbuckle finished with near triple double with 9 pts, 8 steals, and 8 assists. There were a lot of layups for the Wolfpack early on as they made the extra pass to find the open man back door against the North Pole zone defense.
The Patriots made it a game by making a run to only trail by two going into the second down 17-15. But the Wolfpack pulled away in the second half wiht tenacious play on the boards and continued to get quality shots. West Valley wins 61-34.
Larenzo Graham and Jordan Rodenberger led West Valley with 12 a piece in the victory.
West Valley boys basketball head coach Kimani Shotwell said, "Team chemistry is great. It's finally nice to have everybody on the court at the same time. So you know, it's coming together, all the boys love each other. It's because of the players that we have and it just goes to show that we've got some really good guys and they're willing to sacrifice for each other so that we can be you know a pretty good basketball team. Combine into the half of mentality which is to come out and play as hard as you can from the tip to the finish so they're definitely buying in and we're seeing the benefits of it."
In the girls game the Patriots and Wolfpack were close early, similar to the boys' game.
Carlee Marques gave West Valley a 4-0 lead but Josie Broderick who finished with a game 17, six boards and three blocks gets the Patriots some points to make a 4-2 game.
Later Raegan Smothers hit a buckey giving the Patriots their first lead at 6-4. Smothers finished with six points and eight boards. The Patriots were up going into the second 8-6.
At the beginning of the second quarter North Pole's Eric Croxen goes down with an ankle injury. Add in foul trouble for North Pole and West Valley goes go on a 14-2 run in the second and run away with this game. The final 45-30.
Lawjen Ashmore 10 points led a balanced Wolfpack attack as 8 different players scored.
"Defensively, you know those kids got some deflections and we're able to get some steals and make them take some tough shots. And I really think, you know, we have instant offense when we bring Lawjen off the bench for us and she comes in there and does a lot and creates a lot for us. Carlee did a tremendous job running tempo for the game and then Caityln and Callie were strong on the boards and Marina was strong inside. So the kids are establishing their roles and they did an excellent job," said West Valley girls basketball head coach Steve Caciari.